Graduating Student Presentations: Worker Cooperatives, Finding Food, Design for Social Change, and Healing the Soul

12711008_10103117253620669_4887823144492233746_oAsking, We Walk: An Exploration in Organizing, Cooperatives and How to Live, with Graduating Student Dan Kaminsky. This presentation will look at the worker cooperative as a form of anti-capitalist social change. We will then delve into a bit of the hard skills I looked at, namely conflict resolution and facilitation in an effort to bring about desired social change.

Desire, Discards, and Design for Social Change, with SIS Graduating Student Nicolette Stosur-Bassett. This presentation explores the role of human-centered design and design thinking in addressing wicked problems. Academically rooted in critical discards studies, post-Marxist commentary on consumer capitalism, and an exploration of waste art as a social reflection, 15400339_10211720719398550_5454538948849843663_nthe thesis is enacted in the world through ReuseCHI: a tactical urbanism and guerrilla marketing project that challenges social conceptions of function and value. This praxis is presented in a magazine-style format, encouraging novel avenues of engaging the fascinating topic of waste. (Nicolette will present virtually using a YouTube link with Kelly McDowell playing the link in person)

Healing the War within the Soul, with IMA Graduating Student Charlie Pacello. A comprehensive, multi-disciplinary approach, analysis, and process for healing the war within the soul. This presentation will discuss the issues related to PTSD and moral injury; the heart of darkness and the war on the soul experienced by many in our veteran community; the nature of evil and why we make the bargain with the devil; and the pathways to redemption looked through the lenses of spirituality, literature, archetypal psychology, dream analysis, theater and ritual, and historical figures who made the transition to become peaceful warriors. Lastly, we will learn how15107204_10211270235494472_7401581020590448212_n we translate our lives into the mythic story of the hero’s journey, where our suffering can be transformed, our consciousness expanded, and our souls healed by connecting to the myth that lives through us.

Beyond the Plate, a Journey of Finding Food, with Graduating Student Michelle Stone. I will be discussing modern food related issues and my personal journey with finding and reconnecting with natural food.

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Why I Marched: Joanna Tebbs Young

20170121_140334Joanna Tebbs Young, a graduate of GGI in Transformative Language Arts, recently published an article on “Why I Matched” in the Rutland Reader, where she’s a regular contributor. She wrote,

…..I, along with everyone else there that day, believe in the well-being of my fellow human beings and the planet on which we live. I stood there that day to express my support for everyone’s right to quality and affordable health care, to not be discriminated against, to have control over our own bodies, to live in safety, to love and be whoever we are born to be, to be equally educated, and to worship (or not) as we wish.

Read her whole article here, her other columns here, and learn more about Joanna’s work at her website Wisdom Within, Ink.

 

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Women’s March: New York City by Kelly McDowell

img_2998So many Goddard students and faculty participated in the January 21st Women’s March in marches across the country. This series highlights some of those marches. Kelly McDowell is a Social Innovation and Sustainability student who attended the New York City march. Here’s her accounts:

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Kelly McDowell, center, with two friends Rachel (left) and Kaitlin (right)

 

I was at the Women’s March in NYC where approximately 400,000 people attended.  I marched in solidarity with Planned Parenthood, Black Lives Matter, the LGBTQI Community, Healthcare rights and Climate Change.

I also marched with wo social justice warriors in their own fields. My friend Rachael works for the NY Department of Education in their legal department and also with my friend Caitlin who is a social worker in Brooklyn, and her husband is a lawyer working in Brooklyn as well for social justice in their community.

During my march I witness many examples of Radical Art Activism through posters, chanting and impromptu dancing.  As a student in the Masters of the Arts in Social Innovation and Sustainability in the Global Fashion Industry, which is female dominated and a huge world polluter.

~ Kelly McDowell, New York City march

 

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Women’s March in Washington, D.C. with Jan Booth.

So many Goddard students and faculty participated in the January 21st Women’s March in marches across the country. This series highlights some of those marches. Here are notes on being part of the Washington, D.C. march by Health Arts and Sciences student Jan Booth. Also see Taina Asili’s experience in the D.C. march posted several days ago.january-2017-034

Big things were born out of that day of global Women’s Marches. Three things stand out for me personally:

  • The sheer size of the crowds who wanted to be at the DC March

There was little cell reception, so we weren’t aware of just how big an area the March covered as we walked in from the rally bus drop-off at RFK Stadium. We could hear an increasing roar from the crowd as we approached the back of the Capitol, and saw people everywhere…but it wasn’t until I was able to stand up on the steps of a medical vehicle that I caught a glimpse of the massive crowd extending from our side of Independence all the way across the Mall, across Constitution Ave., and into those side streets towards the White House. There was massive determination, tremendous good will, fierce and funny signage, and a surprising number of families.The fact that we couldn’t actually march, because there were too many people jam-packed everywhere, was an ironic victory. Smaller streets and pop-up routes were established for marching, which got things moving and re-energized. Most of us couldn’t hear the speakers, so we engaged with the people in the crowd around us. Given the mass of people and the uncertainty of the logistics, it was good that everyone we encountered kept it cool…even amidst the fierceness. There was something visceral about the sheer physicality of that many people all together in that space — the opposite of isolation and detachment. When we got home and saw reports of all the marches around the world, I was stunned and heartened.

  • The opening-up of a new and energized conversation with my extended family about intersectional feminism

We had 18 family and friends in for the March from all across the country, including my daughter and three of our nieces. Mostly white, mostly women, mostly straight, with a core of nurses and social workers. As we shared stories, conversations, and postings from news & social media later that evening, it became clear that there were other significant narratives developing that were challenging us to go deeper. More waking up. It has since produced a steady burst of new conversations among our extended family and friends about intersectional feminism and privilege and political vigilance, for a start. Lots of other questions — How effective are marches, what about all the pink pussy hats, the exclusion of pro-life women’s groups, generational differences in resistance, the privilege of peaceful protest, how to be an ally, where is common ground with Trump supporters, recognizing variations of white fragility, why haven’t we been at BLM protests,how to stay focused with all the urgent issues… More layers peeled back, more understanding, more listening. Lists of new reading are shared, new ways to engage with grassroots organizations outside of our usual tribes…and new layers of willingness to be uncomfortable and challenged. Family bonding over power, pussies, and privilege!

  • The grassroots, organic evolution of the Women’s March leadership and where we go next

We see new coalitions, old hurts, uncertain alliances, and fresh leadership emerge from the grassroots. Watching those four fierce women come together was powerful for me — Linda Sarsour, Tamika Mallory, Carmen Perez, and Bob Bland are a whole new face of leadership compared to what I saw coming-up in marches in the 1960s and 1970s. It’s the new normal and the way forward, from what I can tell. Like with any birth, it’s messy and unpredictable, too. I’m riding the waves of inspiration and fear and fatigue and determination, like so many others during these first weeks of traumatic Trump leadership. I’m trying to stay woke, keep listening, stay engaged locally in my community, build bridges, and stay steady. I’ve found it essential to balance out the urgency of social media and news cycles with the big picture mythos from people like Michael Meade…especially his recent talks on inauguration, fear, and the rise of the Feminine. Interestingly, tracking the bigger story at play here keeps me firmly connected to my own soul and spirit life.

~ Jan Booth, Washington D.C. march

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Women’s March in Washington, D.C. with Taina Asili

So many Goddard students and faculty participated in the January 21st Women’s March in marches across the country. This series highlights some of those marches. Taina Asili, a graduate of the Individualized MA in Transformative Language Arts, not only marched but performed in Washington, D.C. Here’s her account from her newsletter (more at TainaAsili.com) and a video.

Last weekend I had the honor of performing at three incredible events in protest to Trump’s inauguration. On Thursday I performed at an amazing DisruptJ20 concert featuring Immortal Technique, Sammus, Evan Greer, Rebel Diaz and more! On Friday afternoon I performed to thousands at the DisruptJ20 rally. And on Saturday I performed for a million at the Women’s March, alongside activists I admire such as Angela Davis, Janet Mock, and Gloria Steinem, and artists I love like Toshi Reagon, Climbing PoeTree, Alicia Keys, Janelle Monae, Angelique Kidjo, The Indigo Girls and Madonna. Last weekend was a profound whirlwind. My emotions were all over the place as I prepared to head down to Washington D.C. to sing in protest to Trump’s inauguration.

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Women’s March: Topeka, Kansas by Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg

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From left, Ken Lassman, Dot Nary, and Norman White

So many Goddard students and faculty participated in the January 21st Women’s March in marches across the country. This series highlights some of those marches. Here is faculty member Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg’s account of the march in Topeka, Kansas:

Topeka, Kansas drew over 5,000 people, and featured an impressive array of speakers — a state senator, disabilities rights scholar and activist, Muslim-American writer, Planned Parenthood director, native American climate-change scholar, transgender activist, and a fabulous women’s band called The Skirts. I also was honored to be asked to speak, and I dedicated my reading today one of our local heroes, Dr. Josie Norris, who has helped thousands (tens of thousands perhaps) women do right by their bodies and babies by founding the Topeka Birth and Women’s Center (where our three kids were born). I shared two poems, including one I wrote especially for the event:

Dedications

This is for your grandmothers and mine,

Caryn after reading her poems, photo by Collin MacMillan

Caryn after reading her poems, photo by Collin MacMillan

one who left a Midwestern home where she was abused

to work in a Brooklyn button factory and make a new life,

the other who boarded a ship at nine years old,

not knowing from English or America,

to escape the pogroms that killed her mother.

This is for your mothers and mine, who joined with

My friend Rachel Black speaking truth to power

My friend Rachel Black speaking truth to power

other suburban moms to fill buses with their children

so we could march against the Vietnam War,

and who taught me that be a woman meant to be a feminist.

This is your aunts and mine who gave up a singing career

for marriage because she had to choose, and this

is for your daughters and mine, who never had to think twice

about belting out her songs on the streets and in the clubs.

This is for your nieces and mine, who were abandoned

at railway stations in India but made it through the needle’s eye

to an adoptive family in Missouri where they found

love, education, and a future. This is for your sons and mine

who grew up washing dishes and laundry, and learning to use

their privilege to hold open the door of justice and opportunity

for those previously locked out. This is for the men we love—

your husbands, friends, allies, coworkers and nephews, and mine—

who stepped back to make room for us to step forward,

who have asked instead of answering, who are here today

in body or spirit, ready and already breaking open their hearts

alongside and because of us. This is for your sisters

of origin, of choosing, of fate and mine, all of our beloveds

who keep turning the trauma of sexual abuse,

the micro and macro violations of catcalls in the street

or silencing in the office, and the fear storms that come

from not having enough safety, food, shelter, healthcare

and access into a greater capacity to march or roll,

to speak solo and in chorus, to love who we are called to love

with our widest and deepest dedication to this life,

the generations before and ahead. This is for us:

this moment of knowing how alive we are,

and how this life is rising in us and raising us up

together from this moment on.

I also read “I Will Not Be Afraid of Women,” which you can find right here.

~ Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg, Topeka, Kansas

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Women’s March: Montpelier, Vermont by Tracy Murphy and Stefania Pantanella

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Tracy Murphy

So many Goddard students and faculty participated in the January 21st Women’s March in marches across the country. This series highlights some of those marches. Here’s accounts of the Montpelier, Vermont march by students Tracy Murphy and Stefania Pantanella.

I had the opportunity to join an estimated 15,000 people in Montpelier, Vermont, for the Women’s March and unity rally at the statehouse. Among these people were students in the undergraduate education program at Goddard, who lovingly welcomed me to march and rally with them. The Goddard family and inclusive nature spreads across residencies, I learned.

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Tracy (left) with a friendI learned.

We hollered together. We laughed together. We wiped away tears together. The energy was warm and passionate, and the crowd erupted with thunderous cheer when senator Bernie Sanders made a surprise entrance and speech. I was also blown away by incredible slam poetry performed by Muslim Girls Making Change. It was a sea of love, unity, and pink pussyhats, of which I knit twelve.  It’s a day I hope never to forget.

~ Tracy Murphy, Individualized MA student in Transformative Language Arts

I went to the march in Montpelier at the state capitol building. Reports say that between 6,000-10,0000 people were there.  The population of Montpelier is about 8,000 and on a hoppin’ day you see maybe 100 of them in town so it was quite a sight.

The crowd was upwards of 95% white ‘cause that’s Vermont. But the podium at least was occupied by women of color for much-to-most of the time–we heard songs from Nicole Nelson, from the band Dwight and Nicole; a talk from Ebony Nyoimg_9286ni, who founded Black Live Matter Vermont; and–by far my favorite– poetry from Muslim Girls Making Change, a slam poetry team of four Burlington teens. They knocked my little pink socks off. How can I explain this? Their voices were pain and grit and strength and fabulousness–art at its best, with words that reach right into your heart and give it a ruthless squeeze, and a healthy does of fuck-you.

There were tons of pink pussy hats. Bearded guys standing around in flannels, drinking coffee, with hand-knitted pink pussy hats on their heads; little kids in strollers with hand-drawn signs about pussies (I wonder if they think this protest is about kittens). And many, many women with pink pussy hats on their heads and signs about their own precious pussies in their hands. Even my hard shell of cynicism had to hoot in admiration– pussies as an open rallying cry! Pretty great.

~ Stefania Pantanella, Health Arts and Sciences student

 

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